December! The time of year when I long for food with lots of spices to keep me warm, like these vegetarian Indian Samosas. I created this recipe for the Dutch culinary magazine Elle Eten (Elle Food) a while ago and it has been one of my favorite dishes ever since. Serve it with some panfried spinach for a simple but delicious meal.
Makes 12 samosas
Action Time 45 minutes + 30 minutes waiting time
For the dough
2 cups (9 oz) /250 g (spelt)flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tl salt
1 tsp ajwain seed (optional)
1/4 cup (2 fl oz)/60 ml mild sunflower oil
For the filling
12 oz/350 g sweet potato, peeled and in 1 cm cubes
1 tbsp mild sunflower oil
1 onion, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 1/2 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 mildly hot red chili pepper, finely chopped (seeds removed if you prefer it less hot)
1 1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 large or 2 small apples, peeled and in 1 cm cubes
a large hand fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
about 4 cups /1 liter mild sunflower or canola oil for deep frying (or a deep fryer with oil for deep frying)
Extra: plastic wrap (cling film), thermometer for deep frying or a deep fryer with thermometer, paper towel
1. In a bowl mix the flour with the baking powder, salt and (if using) the ajwain seeds. Add the oil and rub with your vingers until mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add 1/4-1/3 cup/50-80 ml cold water little by little, add water until the dough comes together. Kneed the dough for 4-5 minutes; it should be firm and flexible. Wrap in plastic wrap and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
2 Meanwhile, make the filling. Boil the sweet potato cubes in salted water for about 4 minutes until tender. Drain the sweet potato. Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the onion, garlic, ginger, and chili pepper for about 3 minutes. Stir in the garam masala and cumin seeds and cook for 1 more minute. Add the apple and cook for 2 more minutes. Finely stir in the sweet potato and cilantro. Season to taste and remove the pan from the heat.
3. Divide the dough into 6 equal balls. Put all but one under a damp cloth. Roll the ball out on a lightly floured surface to a circle about 7 inch/16-18cm in diameter and cut in half. Pick up one half, wet the straight edge with water and form into a cone shape, overlapping the wet edge for about 1/3 inch/1 cm and pressing together to seal. Hold the cone in one hand while you fill it with the other. Wet the round top edge, pinch to close and fold over. Put the samosa underneath a damp cloth. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling, making sure each samosa is well sealed.(see pictures below)
4. Heat the oil in a deep pan (or a deep fryer) to about 320F/160C. Add 3-4 samosas and fry until golden brown, turning as necessary. Scoop on to paper towels and deep fry the other samosas in the same way. Serve warm with mint raita (see tip below).
In a food processor puree 20 g fresh mint leaves with 20 g cilantro, 1 mildly hot green chili pepper (seeds removed if you want), 3 scallions, and /125 ml Greek yoghurt. Season and add a pinch of sugar and a dash of lemon juice.